Are you aware of the GMAT rules and regulations set by the GMAC (Graduate Management Admissions Council)? Through this article, we will acquaint you with some of them, so that you are aware of everything before you register for the GMAT and don’t end up in any trouble by making any sort of mistake knowingly or unknowingly. 

GMAT Rules and Regulations: Do’s and Don’ts

The following rules and regulations are laid down by the GMAC and you are required to strictly adhere to them. Here are some ‘dos’:

GMAT Rules and Regulations Dos: At the Test Center 

  • To begin with, when you arrive at the centre you will be asked to present a valid identity proof to the test administrator.
  • Your signature, biometric palm vein scan, and your photograph will be digitally recorded, followed by an audio or video recording in the testing room.
  • Before the GMAT exam starts, you will also be required to accept the GMAT Non-disclosure Agreement and General Terms of Use digitally. 
  • The testing begins as soon as you are seated at your assigned workstation. You have approximately three hours and 8 minutes which is inclusive of breaks, to complete the test.
  • There are two 8-minute optional breaks scheduled during the test. If your breaks exceed the time limit, the excess time will automatically be deducted from the time allocated to you to complete the next section of the test.
  • All testing premises will be monitored by CCTV or other monitoring systems.
  • Once the examination begins, you will require the test administrator’s permission if you need to step out of the test centre. At every instance of entry or exit, you will be asked to submit your palm vein scan for verification purposes.
  • When you are taking the optional break, you must remain within the test centre and be in close proximity to the test room. This policy varies depending on the test centre and it is your responsibility to check with the test administrator the locations that you are permitted to go to.
  • In the event where you require assistance with anything to do with the examination, such as needing supplies like note boards, etc. or need to bring something to the attention of the test administrator, you will have to raise your hand and wait for the test administrator to approach you.
  • Once the examination ends, you may be asked a series of questions regarding your demographics, background, graduate school preferences and if you would like to participate in surveys or receive information from GMAC regarding scholarship organisations or certain strategic partners of GMAC involved in the Graduate Management Admission Search Service (GMASS).

The following are not permissible by the GMAC and indulging in them will lead to dire consequences. Here are some don’ts: 

GMAT Rules and Regulations Don’ts: At the Test Center

  • You are not allowed to use any testing aids such as pens, pagers, calculators, beepers, watch calculators, pamphlets, books, notes, cheat sheets, blank sheets of paper, stereos or radios, rulers, mobile phones, stopwatches, alarm clocks, dictionaries, translators, personal data assistants, and any other digital or photographic devices during the test, and even during breaks.
  • The test administrator will provide you with a booklet of five-note boards. You must not remove the note boards from the testing room in the course of the test or after it, and you must return them to the administrator after the test.
  • You must not talk to anyone while the GMAT exam is being conducted or during the optional breaks. You are not permitted to interact with them when the exam is being conducted and neither are you allowed to interact with them till you’ve exited the exam hall. 
  • You are not allowed to consume any snacks or beverages in the testing room. However, you may store these in a locker assigned to you, however, these are subject to availability depending on the test centre you have chosen. 
  • You are prohibited from smoking or using any product that contains tobacco while you are in the test centre and till you exit the centre.
  • Any non-adherence of rules pertaining to the test centre gives the test administrator liberty to decline entrance into the testing room to continue your exam. 
  • You are not permitted to speak up without the test administrator’s permission as this can disturb other candidates.

During the Examination 

  • For the Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA) section of the GMAT exam, you will be required to compose one original essay. Plagiarism is unacceptable. As per all other test records, the AWA essay is the property of GMAC and not the examinees.
  • Disclosing or making an attempt to displace exam contents from the test centre is strictly prohibited. Candidates cannot remove, reproduce or disclose verbally, in writing or electronically, including but not limited to chat rooms, boards or forums, to a third party any part of the test content. This prohibition is in force before, during, and after your GMAT exam.
  • The test administrator can temporarily expel you from the exam hall for various reasons including providing false information, impersonation, failing to provide acceptable identification, possessing personal items or testing aids that have not been approved by the test administrator, etc. 
  • If you refuse to comply with an administrator’s requests or directions, attempt to help or receive help from other candidates or unauthorized sources, attempt to tamper with the system and fail to adhere to any other procedure, policy, guideline or rule, you are likely to be denied permission to continue with the exam.

Any violations of these rules will be observed and documented by the test administrator and will be reported and submitted to Pearson VUE, GMAC’s authorized administrator for these tests.

Universal GMAT Policy Violations

Any kind of policy violation may result in a minimum 31-day ban on writing the test, scores being withheld or cancelled, notifying business schools of the same, forfeiting test fees, and may also lead to a ban on testing for up to three years. The following are a few examples of common policy violations: 

Policy violation Consequences of the violation 
Usage of any electronic devices during the examination such as mobile phones, tabs, reading devices, Bluetooth devices and music players. GMAT scores withheld or cancelled  A ban is placed on taking the test up to three years from the date of the test Notification sent to the business schools listed by you Loss of exam fee 
If found accessing any of the GMAT study guides GMAT scores withheld or cancelled  A possible ban of one year from the date of the test Notification sent to the business schools listed by you 
Possession of  unauthorised itemsGMAT scores withheld or cancelled  A possible ban of one year from the date of the test Notification sent to the business schools listed by you 
Possession of written notes or cheat sheets GMAT scores withheld or cancelled  A possible ban of one year from the date of the test Notification sent to the business schools listed by you 

The Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) and Pearson VUE have every right to take any and all corrective action(s) deemed appropriate in a case of non-compliance with test rules, policies or procedures. This is not just limited to restricting an applicant from taking the test in the near future but may also lead to cancelling or withholding the individual’s scores and reporting any rule violations, deception, or other inconsistencies to business schools or other relevant third parties, including law enforcement authorities. However, if your scores are withheld or cancelled due to negligence on the GMAC authorities, no reports are sent to the concerned third parties, the entire test fee is waived off, and you will be allowed to take the test free of cost.

We hope to have familiarised you with all the necessary GMAT rules and regulations. Now all there is left for you to do is, prepare for the GMAT and get a good score. All the best!


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